Experts for promotion of domestic tourism

ABBOTTABAD, Oct 2: Speakers at a two-day journalist camp on tourism here stressed the need for promoting domestic tourism and culture through making a soft image of the militancy-hit province.

They said there was a great potential for taping and exploring new heritage sites in the province, adding unless the marvelous beauty was properly marketed, the tourists would never take the risk to visit them.

Amjad Ayub, President Pakistan Association of Tour Operators, while speaking on the occasion said that Pakistan could be a great tourists spot despite law and order situation as there was potential even for promoting and encouraging the adventure tourism because most often tourists around the world come to Pakistan to enjoy hiking, mountaineering and tracking. Also he said that different kind of events including festivals, fairs and ceremonies could be arrange for attracting domestic as well as foreign tourists. He also suggested that a private public partnership should be formed to boost up the tourism industry.

Mohammad Asif, an MPhil scholar at the department of tourism and hospitality at the University of  Hazara, pointed the important features of marketing that could greatly help promoting tourism industry at a large scale. He said that unless all the stake holders including the government the tour operators and the journalists put their hands together there would be only a trickling effect on the overall situation he said (we have such a wonderful diversity that the world people if come and see it would be greatly surprised because they cannot enjoy such natural beauty, cultural heritage different languages and variety of cosines weathers and dresses. The only thing we do need to do to prepare documentaries, short films, profiles and snippets of all the beautiful thing around us and put them on the various media outlets which are  available free of cost to us.

Dr. Johar, director Institute of social work, sociology and gender studies at the University of Peshawar, said the people of this province being very hospitable and caring could greatly contribute because they live a collective life in which people believe in mutual harmony and social values. He said that all the stake holders should take concrete efforts to preserve and present our rich cultural heritage to the world and also measure be taken to introduce it  young in all of our educational institutions so that our young people  could be made aware of our cultural history and present challenges.—GH Farooqui

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